Blog Post 2 - Hanabi

February 5, 2020

For the physical game lab, my group decided to play a Japanese card game called Hanabi. Out of the 5 people in our group, only Tomona (who brought the game to class) had heard of the game before. Tomona explained to us that this is a card game where each player does not see their own hand of cards - instead, we see each of our teammates' cards. The goal of the game is to organize the fireworks from 1 through 5 according to their color (see image below).

Once we understood the goal of the game and how we were all meant to collaborate in order to achieve the goal, Tomona explained to us the limitations of the game. With each turn, a player can either give a hint to a fellow team member, place a card in the middle as part of one of the 5 sequences, or discard a card. Each time a hint is given, a clock token is spent and if we spend all of the clock tokens, we lose one of the 4 fuses. If all of the fuses are used, the game is over. Tomona also shared that if we break one of the sequences by placing a number down that is out of order, a fuse is also used. 

With these rules and limitations in mind, we began to play the game.

Everyone started out with a hand of 5 cards with their deck facing outwards. Bianca began the game by telling Tomona that she had one card with a 1 on it. Following Bianca, Dabria told Kenneth that he had two cards with a 1 on them. For Kenneth's turn, he placed down a card which was a red 1 and started the sequence of red cards.

Tomona then told Biana that she had two red cards and Monica told Kenneth that he also had two red cards. That was the first round of everyone's turns.

Going into the next round, Bianca told Kenneth that one of his cards is a 2 and Dabria told Kenneth that he has three red cards. Kenneth put down a card for his turn and it was a red number 2 - continuing the sequence from before. Tomona told Bianca that she has a 3 and Monica told Kenneth that he also has a 3. Bianca placed a card down for her turn, a red number 3 keeping the red sequence going.

At this point, our clock tokens were running low and we risked "blowing a fuse" if another hint was given. In order to regain a clock token, Dabria discarded a card and a clock token was earned. Following Dabria, Kenneth told Tomona that she has a 4, but instead of placing the card on the able Tomona discarded a card. Monica also discarded a card, and two clock tokens were earned.

During Bianca's turn, she told Tomona that she has a red card. Dabria and Kenneth both discarded cards, which led to Tomona's turn where she put down a red 4 in the sequence. Monica told Bianca that she has a white card, hinting at the beginning of a new sequence of numbers, and Bianca discarded a card for her turn. 

Dabria told Tomona that she has two number 1 cards and Kenneth discarded a card. Tomona told Monica that she also has a number 1 card, and Monica told Bianca that she has a red card.

During Bianca's turn, she told Tomona that she has a green card, and Dabria and Kenneth both discarded cards to regain clock tokens. Tomona put down a green 1 card, beginning a new sequence for the team. Monica told Kenneth that he has a 2 card and Bianca told Kenneth that he has a green card.

Dabria discarded a card to gain more clock tokens and Kenneth continued the green sequence by putting down a green 2 card. Tomona attempted to keep building the green sequence by telling Monica she has two green cards, but Monica and Bianca both discarded cards for their turn. 

Dabria told Tomona that she has a number 3 and Kenneth discarded a card for his turn. Tomona told Bianca that she has two number 1 cards, hinting at starting more sequences and Monica told Tomona that she has a 3 card.

Bianca, Dabria, and Kenneth all discarded cards to regain clock tokens for hints. Tomona put down a green 3 for her turn. Monica told Tomona that she had two blue cards and Bianca told Tomona that she had a yellow card.

At this point in the game, we realized the draw pile had shrunk to about 10 cards. Unsure of what to do, us four players asked Tomona if we shuffle the deck of discarded cards to replenish the draw pile. Tomona shared that once the draw deck has been used up, there are no more cards in the game and as a team we realized we were headed towards failure because we did not know about this rule. After playing a few more rounds and attempting to start and finish a yellow sequence, our game had ended and we had failed our task. At the end of the game, we were left with the following a sequence of 1-3 of both yellow and green cards and a sequence of 1-4 of red cards.

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